"We're getting married!"
"How wonderful! Congratulations! I knew it was coming! (etc) So when's the date?"
Silence. Followed by complete and utter deflation. "But that's so far awayyyyy."
Well, I suppose it's farther away than next summer, but we want time to appreciate living together before jumping full force into wedding planning. And we want time to save more money. Both are eminently reasonable and practical. Yet both are apparently as boring as watching paint dry, from the reactions we get.
When did sensible timeframes become boring? Why is it so important to get married as soon as you get engaged? We've already determined that we want to spend the rest of our lives together, which could stretch into the next 60+ years, so I'm not sure why taking an extra few months before the wedding should matter in the grand scheme of things. And I'm not sure why people are so upset - yes, upset - when we mention our very practical reasons for waiting. (Side note, I'm not sure why other people get upset at all when we mention anything about our wedding plans. Stop getting invested in our plans and just come along for the fun, okay?)
So to counter this silly expectation that engagement = wedding-in-the-near-future, here's why a long engagement can be great (18 months out version):
- I don't feel stressed about planning. We can go at our own speed without it taking over all our free time.
- It's a process of discovery and not a rush to make decisions
- We have time for marriage planning, including pre-marital counseling
- We can do extensive bargain shopping, including buying used decor from brides, shopping the after holiday sale, and scouring craigslist and Bride$hare type options at our leisure
- We have time to attempt, fail and try again with DIY projects
- We have more time to save $$$. And weddings cost $$$$$$$
- People don't assume that weddings are our only conversational topic, because we're primarily in a non-planning mode.
- There's no holy cr*p panic about where to start, so we can better figure out what this whole process means to us.